NFL Betting Terms
ATS– against the spread.
10 Cent Line – The money line difference (10 cents) between what a bettor would lay with the favorite or take back with the underdog; see Dime Line.
20 Cent Line – The money line difference (20 cents) between what a bettor would lay with the favorite or take back with the underdog.
Action – A wager of any kind.
Bad Beat – Tough Loss.
Beard – Messenger bettor.
Buck – $100.
Chalk – Favorite.
Circled Game – Game where action is limited due to uncertainties about weather, injuries, etc. Cover – Win by more than the pointspread.
Dime – $1000.
Dime Line – Slang used to designate the 10 cent money line. The money line difference (10 cents) between what a bettor would lay with the favorite or take back with the underdog; see 10 Cent Line.
Dog – Underdog.
Dollar – $100.
Edge – Advantage.
Even Money – A wager on which neither side lays any odds or vigorish.
Exotic Bet – Action other than a straight bet or parlay.
Exposure – The amount of money one actually stands to lose on a game or race.
Favorite – The contestant in any given contest that is considered the most talented, or has the best chance to win the contest.
Firing – Betting a lot. A player who is “firing” is wagering large sums.
“Foots” – Slang word used sometimes for football.
Futures – Wagers made, or lines/odds posted on an event or outcome taking place some time in the future, e.g. betting during the season on the Super Bowl winner.
Get Down – Make a bet.
Grand Slam – The four major tennis tournaments: Wimbledon, Australian Open, French Open, U.S. Open. Also the four major golf tournaments: The Masters, U.S. Open, British Open, PGA Championship (Professional Golf Association). Also in baseball, a homerun with the bases loaded, scoring four runs.
Grand Salami – A slang word for the over/under total for the combined score of all the hockey contests on the schedule for that day.
Halftime Line – A line on only the first half, or only the second half scoring of a football or basketball game.
Handicapper – One who studies sports and predicts outcomes.
Hedge – Bet the opposite of your original wager in order to reduce the amount of exposure you have on a game.
Hook – Half point in pointspreads.
“Hoops” – Slang word used to indicate the game of basketball.
Home Field Advantage – Edge the home team is expected to have as a result of familiarity with the playing area, favorable demographics and effect of travel on the visiting team.
Hoops – Basketball.
Hot Tip – Information the bookmaker is not yet privy to.
IBF – International Boxing Federation.
Juice – Bookmaker’s commission, most often refers to the 11 to 10 football bettors lay
on straight wagers. Also known as vigorish.
Lay The Points – A wager on a favorite in a pointspread contest Lay The Price – A wager on a favorite in a moneyline contest.
Limit – Maximum bet accepted by the house before the price will be changed.
Line – The moneyline, odds, or pointspread of any given contest.
(LP) – The pitcher or pitchers listed by Las Vegas oddsmakers as robable starting pitchers for a scheduled baseball game.
Lock – Easy Winner.
Longshot – Large underdog.
Middle – To win both sides of a game. For example, if you bet the underdog +3 1/2 and the favorite -2 1/2 and the favorite wins by 3, you’ve
middled the book. The book has been middled.
MLB – Major League Baseball.
Moneyline – The amount you must bet to win 100 or the amount you win if you bet 100.
MVP – Most Valuable Player. Leagues give MVP Awards to the best regular-season and to the outstanding player in championship games or series.
NBA – National Basketball Association.
NCAA – National Collegiate Athletic Association.
Neutral Site – Arena, court or field where neither side has a home field advantage.
NFL – National Football League.
NHL – National Hockey League.
Nickel – $500.
NIT – National Invitational Tournament.
Off The Board – Game where no bets are being accepted.
Over/Under – A bet on whether the combined total of the points/goals scored by the two teams will exceed or be less than a specified number.
Overlay – When the odds on a proposition are in favor of the bettor rather than the house.
Overtime – The continuance of a contest that is tied at the end of regulation time until a winner is determined or the maximum
number of overtime periods have expired.
Parlay – A bet with two or more teams where all the teams must win for the bettor to be successful.
Past Post – To make a bet after an event has started.
Penny Line – A money line that is adjusted in increments of a penny, or one cent at a time.
Pick or Pick’em – A game where neither team is favored.
Player – Bettor, gambler.
Pointspread – The handicap, or head start, which the favorite gives to the underdog for betting purposes.
Press – To bet a larger amount than usual.
Price – The moneyline odds on the favorite of a given match.
“Pucks” – A slang word used to indicate the game of hockey.
Puppy – Underdog.
Push – A tie between the bettor and the bookmaker that is the result of the score of an event falling exactly on the pointspread number, or the total points number.
Rain Out – A contest that has been canceled because of bad weather.
Round Robin – A series of parlays. A three-team round robin consists of one three-team parlay and three two-team parlays.
Rundown – Line update.
Runner – Messenger bettor; see beard.
Ryder Cup – A golf tournament between American and European golfers that is staged
every two years.
Scalper – One who attempts to profit from the differences in odds from book to book by betting both sides of the same game at different prices.
Score – To win a lot of money.
Scratch – Withdraw; cancel.
Sharp – Wise guy.
Side – To win one side and tie the other. For example, if you lay -2 1/2 and take 3 on
the same game and the favorite wins by 3 you have sided the book. The book has been sided.
Side Bet/Side Wager – A wager on a particular team, or side, to win a contest.
Soft Line – A wagering line that is not current with the true posted line. A line that has been adjusted or moved as a result of action and does not reflect the true line as posted.
Spread – An abbreviated form of pointspread.
Stanley Cup – NHL Championship.
Steam – When a betting line starts to move quite rapidly. Most “steam games” do not necessarily reflect the “right side”, but are games that the mass of bettors somehow decide to key on.
Straight Bet – A single wager on a selected side or over/under.
Sudden Death – An overtime period in which the first contestant to score is declared the winner of the contest.
Superbowl – NFL Championship game.
Take A Price – A wager on the underdog in a moneyline contest.
Points – A wager on the underdog in a pointspread contest.
Teaser – A bet on 2 or more teams where the line on each team is adjusted in the favor of the bettor. Like a Parlay, all selections must be correct for the teaser to win.
The Big Dance – The 64 team, post season college basketball championship tournament.
Toss Up – Game where the line is close to pick-em.
Total – The line on a given contest, representing the combined number of points/goals scored by the two teams; see over/under.
Tout Service – A business that sells opinions on sporting events.
Underdog – The contestant in any given contest that is considered the least talented, or has the least chance to win the contest.
Underlay – When the odds on a proposition are in favor of the house.
Value – An overlay.
Vigorish – Bookmaker’s commission, most often refers to the 11 to 10 football bettors lay on straight wagers. Also known as juice.
WBA – World Boxing Association.
WBC – World Boxing Council.
Wise Guy – Established and successful sports bettor.
WNBA – Womens National Basketball Association.
World Series – MLB championship; The final seven games of the baseball playoffs between the two league champions to determine the world champion.